Lectures & Events

An Environmental Break Through? The Challenge of Climate Change, the Death of Environmentalism, and the Politics of Possibility
Environmental Law Lecture presented by the Center for Business Law and Regulation
FEB 13, 2008
4:30 PM - 5:30 PM
Moot Courtroom (A59)

Global climate change may present the greatest environmental challenge of all time. Despite claims of urgency, there has been little action. Does this represent a failure of environmental politics? Is the current regulatory approach to environmental protection capable of addressing the challenge presented by global warming? Current environmental laws do little to address the threat of climate change. Some analysts argue that new laws are not enough, however. Rather, a new paradigm of environmental protection is necessary that stresses innovation and opportunity, in place of the politics of limits that motivate many of the environmental laws on the books. This is part of the provocative thesis Ted Nordhaus and Michael Shellenberger advance in their book, Break Through: From the Death of Environmentalism to the Politics of Possibility. This event will feature remarks by Nordhaus and Shellenberger, followed by commentary by Professor Jonathan H. Adler and Professor Ted H. Steinberg on the implications of the speakers' thesis for environmental law and policy.
Speaker Information
Ted Nordhaus, Chairman
The Breakthrough Institute

Ted Nordhaus is an author, researcher, and political strategist. He is co-author of Break Through and "The Death of Environmentalism." Over the last twenty years, Mr. Nordhaus has run major campaigns and initiatives for a large assortment of environmental and progressive political causes including the Public Interest Research Groups (PIRGs), the Sierra Club, Environmental Defense, and Clean Water Action. He also served as the Campaign Director for Share the Water, a coalition of environmentalists, fishermen, farmers, and urban water agencies advocating reform of federal water policies in California, Executive Director of the Headwaters Sanctuary Project, and as a partner and political strategist with Next Generation and Evans/McDonough strategy and research firms serving political campaigns and environmental organizations. Mr. Nordhaus holds a B.A. in history from the University of California.

Michael Shellenberger, President
The Breakthrough Institute

Michael Shellenberger works on and writes about everything from energy to technology innovation to changing social values. As president of the Breakthrough Institute, he is a leading national advocate for the U.S. to make a 10-year, $500 billion public-private investment into cutting-edge clean energy technologies to achieve energy independence and restore America's economic competitiveness. He is co-author of Break Through and "The Death of Environmentalism." Mr. Shellenberger has written for L.A. Times, the American Prospect, Glamour Magazine, and other publications. He has worked as a strategist for efforts to win action on global warming, save the world's last redwoods, and improve working conditions for Nike factory workers in China. He was raised in Greeley, Colorado, received his B.A. from Earlham in Indiana, and received a Masters Degree in cultural anthropology from the University of California.

Jonathan H. Adler

Professor & Director, Center for Business Law & Regulation

Jonathan H. Adler teaches environmental, regulatory, and constitutional law. He is the author or editor of three books on environmental policy, including Environmentalism at the Crossroads (1995). His articles have appeared in numerous publications ranging from the Harvard Environmental Law Review to The Wall Street Journal, and is a frequent commentator in the national media. A contributing editor to National Review Online, he is a regular contributor to the popular legal blog, "The Volokh Conspiracy." In 2004, Prof. Adler was awarded the Paul M. Bator Award, given annually by the Federalist Society for Law and Policy Studies to an academic under 40 for excellence in teaching, scholarship, and commitment to students. Prior to this, he clerked for the Honorable David B. Sentelle on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit. From 1991 to 2000, Prof. Adler worked at the Competitive Enterprise Institute, a free market research and advocacy group in Washington, D.C., where he directed the environmental studies program. He received his B.A. in 1991 from Yale University and his J.D. in 2000 from George Mason University.

Ted Steinberg
Professor of History and Law

Ted Steinberg came to Case in 1996 after teaching at Michigan and Rutgers (Newark). He has written numerous articles and four books: Down to Earth: Nature's Role in American History (2002); Acts of God: The Unnatural History of Natural Disaster (2000); Slide Mountain, or the Folly of Owning Nature (1995); and Nature Incorporated: Industrialization and the Waters of New England (1991), the last a co-winner of the Willard Hurst Prize in American Legal History. A 1996 Guggenheim Fellow, he has twice been nominated for the Pulitzer Prize. He received his B.A. from Tufts in 1983 and his Ph.D. from Brandeis in 1989.
Additional Information
Free and open to the public. One free hour of CLE credit for lawyers who attend.

Supplemental Readings:
· Fast, Clean and Cheap (Shellenberger, Nordhaus, Navin, Norris, Noppen)
· Lowdown on Doomsday (Adler)
· On Global Warming (Shellenberger, Nordhaus)
· Additional Suggested Readings

Lecture Podcasts:
· Podcast

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